The Professional Version:
I have worked as a Social Worker, Mental Health and Special Education Consultant, Educational Instructor, and Medical Psychotherapist. I bring all of these skills, and experiences, to my current practice as a LifeCoach, specializing in ADD/ADHD.
After receiving my Master’s Degree from The College of William and Mary, I began my career as a Social Worker, with the City of Williamsburg, Va., specializing in Child and Family Services. Invaluable experience was gained working with a diverse population regarding adoption, foster care, family and school issues, mental health issues, crisis intervention, and developmental and behavioral issues. During this time, I was a board member of the Big Bothers, Big Sisters Organization, in Williamsburg, VA, and served as a Big Sister.
After four years as a Social Worker, I took a hiatus to be a stay-at-home Mom, raising my two small children. During this time, I did volunteer work with Williamsburg Community Hospital, as a Lactation Consultation, teaching new mothers how to have a successful nursing experience with their newborns. In 1982, I moved from Virginia to Connecticut, and continued my volunteer work as a Lactation Consultant with Hartford Hospital.
In 1986, I joined Human Development Associates, a consortium of professionals, specializing in different aspects of developmental disabilities. I worked as a Medical Psychotherapist, under the supervision of Jonathan Stolzenburg, M.D.
In 1996, I left Human Development Resources, relocated to Stamford, CT, and began ADD Coach Services, providing nationwide coaching services online for individuals, and parents of children, with Attention Deficit Disorders, Mood Disorders, Anxiety, and those who love them.
The Personal Version...
I have lived a life brimming with ADHD/ADD and Learning Differences. Some of my siblings, many extended family members, in-laws, friends, and children all have attention and/or learning differences. Some of the people in my life have chosen to pursue a diagnosis and intervention; others deny it is part of their reality. Some exhibit the typical hyperactive profile; others are not at all hyperactive. There is every ADHD/ADD type and subtype, a wide variety of learning differences, and a real cornucopia of co-morbidities, among my loved ones. I have watched many of those closest to me succeed with, or suffer from, these conditions...depending on their degree of acceptance. A lifetime of up close and personal observations of so many has led me to a deeper understanding, than I might otherwise have, of the impact these conditions can have on one's life. I have had the opportunity to see every intervention, and treatment, put to the test in the trenches.
My most important ADD education, regarding intervention and treatment, came from being on the front line since the days when Ritalin was the only stimulant available and there was no such thing as a PET Scan. This gave me the opportunity to learn right from the "horse's mouth". Since conference presenters were often the ones doing the latest research, new information was often shared before it had even been published, and I was there soaking it all up. Anyone who was fortunate enough to be in the field 25 years ago was there to receive the most current information, and have the opportunity to discuss it with the brilliant minds pushing the science forward.
It was a time when a psychiatrist was a psychoanalyst one saw weekly, sometimes for years, and appointments lasted for a full hour. There were many types of therapist's and counselor's, but the only coaches we knew were our children's sports coaches. ADHD was called Hyperkinetic Disorder and there were only two stimulants used to treat the condition. There were no courses taught on attention and learning differences in our universities.
The world of medical science has moved forward so rapidly since those days, and I have been fortunate enough to be there all the way. I was there when...
- Dr. Zimetkin revealed the first PET Scan image illustrating the differences between the brain with, and without, ADD.
- the first T.V. commercial about ADD was unveiled.
- the name was changed to ADD, and then ADHD, divided into subtypes, and now viewed as a spectrum disorder.
- the first long acting medication was introduced, recalled, reintroduced, and was eventually followed by a continually growing number of newer, longer acting medications.
- the first non-stimulant medication to treat ADD was introduced.
- the first medication approved for ADD and delivered by transdermal patch was introduced.
Because this is a condition which touches the lives of so many of those close to me, I am passionate about relieving the suffering it can cause, and am committed to working tirelessly to find the most appropriate interventions for each individual client.
Please help another family find their way through the ADD maze of educational, medical, and therapeutic challenges by making a GrADDitude Donation. If you have been helped through your ADD maze, please show your GrADDitude by making a donation, so that others may also be helped.
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